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ID:	31058We're still waiting for the roster to be finalized before we take a comprehensive look at USC in 2023.

In the meantime, keeping the discussion purely to basketball, what does the commitment of Bronny James mean for the Trojans?

First, it means the Trojans have a chance to have another quality outside shooter to pair with Boogie Ellis and Kobe Johnson. Boogie, of course, shot 39% from beyond the 3-point arc while Kobe shot 36%. It is a crap shoot as to whether Bronny will be able to shoot at that level, since it is common for sharp-shooters to struggle a bit as freshmen -- see Sellers, Oziyah this past season -- but the addition of Isaiah Collier alongside Boogie might give Bronny the kind of low-pressure clean looks that Sellers didn't see as much last season. It seems reasonable to hope that Bronny is going to at least improve upon what Tre White and Reese Waters-Dixon produced from three (27 and 29%, respectively), while also reasonable to conclude that Sellers -- given the opportunity at a larger sample size of clean attempts from long range -- will come closer to justifying Andy Enfield's statement that he is the best shooter he has ever coached. If Sellers and Bronny can combine to shoot between 35 and 40% from three, then USC will have the kind of shooting it needs to win a lot of games. Of course, there is also the chance that Bronny, like he showed in the McDonalds All-American game, is more than ready for prime time and shoots for a great percentage from long distance from the jump. Then, the sky is probably the limit for this backcourt.

Second, but maybe not as talked about, is that Bronny brings another ball handler to the back court. Collier will, of course, be the primary ball handler, and Boogie will occasionally slide over into that role. But with over five months until the season gets underway, I suspect Bronny is going to work very hard to improve his ball handling ability so that he is the de facto backup point guard by the end of the season. As it stands now, his handles are only "okay" and he can struggle when pressured and when trying to penetrate. But, he is a James, and with the resources available to him, he is only going to get better in this area. I think if he can do so and grow into a legitimate backup point to the point where he is confident running the team, he just might return in Year Two as the starting point guard and work at developing in that role for the NBA. Regardless, he will help USC in this area in Year One.

Third, he is a defensive-minded player whose production on that side, I think, is going to be comparable to what De'Anthony Melton brought to the table defensively when he was a freshman. This is a lofty comparison, as Melton had the ability to influence games without scoring and could occasionally lock down elite players like Lonzo Ball. Melton was a natural on defense and what made him even better at it was the lack of pressure on him to score. Bronny will be in the same position. He won't be relied upon to score too much and so he will be better able to focus on what he is very good at -- using his quick hands to get steals, disrupt passing lanes, block shots, get to loose balls, etc. The result will be an improved overall team defense and, of course, a lot of that defense will turn into offense for either him or his teammates.

Fourth, and it's been talked about a lot, but Bronny will bring a rare team mentality to the program. Unlike a lot of players in college basketball, Bronny's future is secure. He has doors open to him that are not open to others. So he plays the game for the pure love of it and by all accounts is an excellent teammate with a very good work ethic. Some players sign with a program and require a certain amount of minutes, or they want a certain amount of money from NIL, or they worry about the depth chart, or they have helicopter parents with all kinds of insane demands. Bronny doesn't need to be at USC to be successful. The fact that he is joining the program means that he wants to be there. For a lot of high-level athletes, these arrangements are purely transactional (cough, cough). Doesn't seem like that with Bronny.

Lastly, (and maybe most exciting), the one thing I've learned over time is that blood lines usually matter in sports. Sometimes they don't. But they usually do and eventually they kick in. There is no doubt in my mind that Bronny's ceiling is not close to being reached yet and that, given time and experience, we're going to see some rapid improvement in his game. Much of that improvement is going to happen at USC. He will probably have his struggles at times. Most freshmen do. But he is temperamentally suited for this moment in a way that few young athletes are. And it doesn't hurt to have one of the greatest players to ever pick up a basketball there to love and guide you when you need help.

It's going to be an exciting year for USC basketball and there will be more eyes on the program than ever before. This is going to be a great team and Bronny's bright light is going to illuminate everyone else. I can't think of a better way to leave the Pac-12 behind than to steamroll it on the way out the door.‚Äč